Patriots

Morning Skate: Thursday, November 8

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Morning Skate: Thursday, November 8

A mock one-on-one interview between Patrice Purrgeron and Tim Thomas on the day after Barack Obama was reelected as President. Good job, fellas.

An argument for fans to not get so personal when it comes to the lockout from Puck Drunk Love. Easier said than done in my opinion.
 

Interesting piece detailing the Make Whole provision and the ways in which the NHL can continue walking down the parallel road that the NBA did to solve the lockout. This will take some give from the NHL.
 

Andy Strickland says that youll know real progress is being made when the Make Whole provision is truly agreed upon by both sides in the CBA process.
 

Tyler Seguin and Patrick Kane are taking the world by storm, and getting into the local traditions in Switzerland at the same time.
 

CSNPhilly.com covers the timetable of Max Talbot signing with the Finnish League, and some of the reasons why that might be.
 

Unfortunate story of the Lawrence Eagle Tribune Merrimack reporter Mike McMahon, who had his position eliminated with the newspaper earlier this week.
 

Molson Coors is looking for redress from the NHL for all of the beer-drinking revenue lost during the lockout over the last two months.
 

For something completely different, The Daily Beast says that Nate Silver is a beast when it comes to predicting elections. That is all.

Inconsistent Bruins hope to settle in at home

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Inconsistent Bruins hope to settle in at home

BRIGHTON -- The Bruins' actual 2-3-0 won-loss record isn’t particularly terrible, especially when you consider they were without Patrice Bergeron and David Backes.

But they've been wildly inconsistent within those first five games, playing a couple of very good games against the Predators and Coyotes while suffering three ugly, non-competitive losses to Colorado and Vegas. The Bruins are 20th in goals scored (2.8 goals per game) and 22nd in goals allowed (3.6), and their special teams have been average at best in a soft part of the schedule that should have allowed them to get off to a good start.

The Bruins have looked sloppy much of the time with chaotic breakouts, far too many breakdowns in defensive coverage, and goaltending has been average at best.

As a result they're scuffling in the Atlantic Division as the Lightning and Maple Leafs have sprinted out to strong starts. Clearly it’s still early -- nearly the entire season is in front of them -- but there’s also no illusion about the need for a quick turnaround in what’s going to be a competitive division.

That's why the next four games, all at TD Garden, are so important.

“We’ve been inconsistent in our game. We’ve been good and we’ve been not good, so hopefully being home will allow us to get back into form,” said coach Bruce Cassidy. “We knew going in with a youth movement that we’d had some ups and downs. We’ve had both. We’ve had some really strong games and we’ve had some other games where there’s a learning curve.

“As good as [our] prospects are, it falls on the core group to be solid and consistent every night. Then you lose a bit of your core group [to injuries] and you need your support players that aren’t your core group -- but aren’t kids, either -- to contribute. So we’re battling through all of that, and it’s up to us to put in a game plan that gets us through it. We haven’t achieved the level we’d like. We aren’t hiding behind that. We’d like to be better than we are right now, and we’re facing it head on every day.”

Clearly there are plenty of players in the “support player” category referenced by Cassidy who haven’t performed to date, and that also explains some of the Bruins consistency issues. Matt Beleskey, Ryan Spooner, Frank Vatrano and Riley Nash have a combined two assists and a combined minus-5 rating through those first five games, and are among the players that need to step up and perform if the Bruins are going to start achieving the consistency that Cassidy is actively seeking right now.